Peterborough United failed to take advantage of a game in hand as struggling Oldham Athletic recorded a deserved 2-0 victory over Peterborough United at Boundary Park.
After a turgid first half, which was a non event for both sides, the hosts improved marginally after the interval and condemned Grant McCann's men to a second poor defeat in Lancashire in as many weeks.
Banks sent a speculative effort from long-range wide of the target on seven minutes after a hefty challenge in midfield from Fane went unpunished.
Banks sent a deflected free-kick wide of the target after Bostwick was penalised for a high boot 30-yards from goal.
McLaughlin sent a deflected effort inches wide of the target on 18 minutes after Posh were caught on a swift counter attack.
Clarke fired over from 10-yards as Posh struggled to clear a set-piece as Oldham came closest to a breakthrough on 37 minutes.
Nichols fired over with the aid of a deflection on the stroke of half-time before official Mr Salisbury brought an end to a rather turgid 45 minutes.
McGee made his first save of the evening to deny a volley from Green on 47 minutes.
Gerrard was cautioned for tugging down Nichols on 53 minutes. Bostwick fired the free-kick straight into the arms of Ripley but it was the first shot on target from Grant McCann's men, coming in the 55th minute.
Manager McCann made a double change on the hour mark with Leonardo Da Silva Lopes and Paul Taylor replacing Angol and Edwards.
The hosts opened the scoring on 69 minutes, a penalty awarded for a shirt tug by Smith, GREEN stepping up and coolly converting the spot-kick.
Holloway volleyed over from the edge of the box as Oldham came close to a second goal as Posh gifted possession to their hosts in a needless position.
Junior Morias replaced Nichols on 71 minutes as McCann made his final change. Banks was denied by McGee on 79 minutes as Oldham threatened a deserved second goal.
That goal arrived moments later, a simple tap in for MCLAUGHLIN after excellent work from the hard-working Holloway.
Maddison clipped the bar with a powerful effort from long-range before the referee brought an end to a disappointing defeat.
Oldham: Ripley, Reckord, Wilson, Gerrard, Flynn, Banks, Amadi-Holloway (sub Ngoo 87min), Fane, Clarke, McLaughlin (sub McKay 87min), Green. Unused subs: Kettings, Law, Edmundson, Mantack, Erwin.
Posh: McGee, Smith, Hughes, Bostwick, Tafazolli, Edwards (sub Da Silva Lopes 60min), Forrester, Angol (sub Taylor 60min), Maddison, Ball, Nichols (sub Morias 73min). Unused subs: Tyler, Inman, Binnom-Williams, Samuelsen.
Half-time: Oldham Athletic 0-0 Peterborough United
Full-time: Oldham Athletic 2-0 Peterborough United
Attendance: 7,224 (442 Posh fans)